Rumours about the demise of this blog are, I understand, circulating like wildfire, causing consternation and distress amongst our legion of fan. I thought I’d better do something about it, to whit: getting my arse into gear.
So - back in the summer, when daylight, and even sunshine, were in plentiful supply, I was joined by A and B and our friend Beaver B (no, I shan’t explain….oh well, go on then, suffice to say it’s more to do with Boy Scouting than Wild-West-Frontier animal skinning type activities) for an afternoon stroll on Hutton Roof.
We pulled off the Clawthorpe road and headed up via Lancelot Clark Storth, a Wildlife Trust Nature Reserve. Every time I come this way, I seem to find a different path to follow. So eventually we reached high ground in an unfamiliar spot and with no sign of the top. We followed a promising looking path.
Which brought us to a large cairn….
…which I recognised. I’d climbed up to it, I thought, from one of the principal paths across Hutton Roof on a previous visit. "The main path is just down there" I said. But scrambling down the small limestone edge through dense scrub to a path which I vaguely recalled might be nearby didn’t seem a very attractive option. There followed a good half-hour, or maybe more, of wandering aimlessly in convoluted spirals and curlicues looking for a significant path, a recognisable landmark or the elusive trig pillar. Beaver B has a dodgy ankle, but if he resented my useless navigation and our fruitless search across broken limestone pavements and tussocky grasslands, he hid it well.
B found lots of these elegant little snails in a tree. We tried some hazelnuts, which seem to have been both large and abundant this year.
The heather was flowering. It always impresses me that this ericaceous plant grows on the limestone hills roundabout. I’m sure I read somewhere that this is a result of pockets of acid soil which date back to ash from the Borrowdale volcanoes.
We never did find the top. Eventually we returned to the prominent cairn, and almost immediately found an easy way down to the path, which, it transpired, was exactly where I’d thought it would be. Which was little comfort after all the navigational incompetence which had preceded this realisation.
Fabulous spot Hutton Roof, I really should get there more often.